One Dozen or So From the Archives: Episode 13

Another installment of poems still waiting in the archives to be heard. Finishing up loose ends.

If you want more details, here’s the Big Long Explanation. Otherwise, just read as many or few of these poems as you’d like. And thank you, as always!

These poems are all from Repairs, published 2017.

On This Block

Open windows
hot day.
In sunshine
three stories below
birds chatter
stalk through weeds
between the building
and the sidewalk
pick up insects
in a rhythm
too quick for their prey
to figure out



Paved area
path junction
single tree, broad-leaved.
Fence, east corner.
I will be waiting.


Never Better

The knee-high grass
full of ticks
the creek bank
home to a snake
out for a stroll.
The meadow
exhaling shifting clouds of gnats
the pine grove
a carpet of dried needles
I sneeze.
Even so
Look for me
wild rose thorns
scratched my legs
sneakers wet
I fell in the creek
You’ll see me
running down the path
nothing but smiling.


This Particular Day

Answered the door
a nice old lady holding a cake on a platter
Welcome to the neighborhood
I think there has been a misunderstanding
I said
we’ve lived here a geological age
she was quite certain
so we sat in the dining room and ate it all
with coffee. It was good.
I must have the recipe
I told her. The sugar gave me
Oh thank goodness that little spurt of energy
got me through the rest of the afternoon
now I’m going to lie down on the sofa for a little bit
a fly buzzing at the window
What an odd day.


Luna Moth

shake out your wings
they must air-dry
before you can go

no one sees you
before your wings are ready
you have no way to call out

into the night
those same wings
exquisite pale and good for a week
no more
a week wears you out

what went before
you first stepped out
from your cocoon
to wait while your wings
prepared themselves
this life too short
to waste



Flower beds
the sound of blossoms opening
knee-high magic
unsteady stems
with red petals spilling out
in circles


Great While It Lasted

I was sitting on a chair
nice chair, solid

when I realized
it only had three legs
I fell to the floor
carpeted, luckily

when I realized
it was actually
linoleum over concrete
that’s all right
I’m only twenty-one years old
a fall like this one
can’t hurt me

when I realized
I am fifty-eight years old
and my left wrist is broken.


Clear Green-Eyed View

Been coasting on your reputation
have you
and look what happened
You got a promotion
Your wife thinks you’re as good-looking as ever
and you just inherited
enough money to buy you that beach house
It’s going to hurt
when the road starts to slant
I hope


Motel Life

It is difficult to wear out
a one-hundred percent polyester bedspread
to threadbare
it can be done
with time and patience
lots of bleach
and a whole lot of cycles
in the washer

hundreds of nightmares
evening after evening of
lying on the bed
lying in the bed
all kinds of tossing and turning
one to four people
with shoes on
shoes off
suitcases, purses, bags
wet swimsuits
thrown on it
all kinds of spilled everything


By Definition

walked past the windows
around the corner
dressed in a sweater but
how about a tour of the grounds
he said
how about a funeral
if I stay out a minute longer
in this miserable cold
she said
I’m a house guest
Let’s go in the house.


Last Supper

In a hurry to
complete the preparations for the fancy dinner
enough to feed the whole family
who then tell me everything tastes bad
this food isn’t helping my weak heart and fatty liver
I’m wheezing you must’ve forgotten
my allergies.
I stand in the kitchen
washing the greasy skillet
pick up the last sad little onion in the bowl
throw it through the kitchen window
I’m done here.


You’d Think

After the surgery
now you have an extra lung and two hearts
but you don’t love me any more than you ever did
for all that.
I’d hoped for a dozen roses on my birthday
and doing the dishes every day of the week
nothing’s changed.


10 thoughts on “One Dozen or So From the Archives: Episode 13

  1. This is another wonderful selection. A number of them conjured up the feelings and experiences of pleasant summer days. I was drawn to those today because I am definitely over these chilly temperatures.

  2. Motel Life is a sad and a little depressing – but it is a slice of real life for many. We traveled and some of the places we have stayed were just like that!

    • Our family travels were on a budget and this poem is pretty true to the places we usually stayed. I am glad I never had a job in which I had to travel a lot, that is for sure.

  3. This made me remember when I came home after falling into the creek while trying to catch tadpoles. I didn’t understand why my mother was so exasperated with me. (K)

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